Ned O'Keeffe

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Ned O'Keeffe
Minister of State for Food
In office
8 July 1997 – 17 February 2001
Preceded by Jimmy Deenihan
Succeeded by Éamon Ó Cuív
Teachta Dála
In office
December 1982 – February 2011
Constituency Cork East
In office
May 1982 – November 1982
Constituency Nominated by the Taoiseach
Personal details
Born (1942-08-01) 1 August 1942 (age 76)
Mitchelstown, County Cork, Ireland
Nationality Irish
Political party Fianna Fáil
Spouse(s) Ann Buckley
Children 5
Alma mater University College Cork

Edward "Ned" O'Keeffe (born 1 August 1942) is an Irish former Fianna Fáil politician. He served as a Teachta Dála (TD) for the Cork East constituency from 1982 to 2011.[1]


O'Keeffe was born in Ballindangan, Mitchelstown, County Cork in 1942. He was educated at Darra College, Clonakilty where he received a diploma in Social and Rural Science. O'Keeffe was a pig farmer before becoming involved in politics.

Political career[edit]

In 1982 he was nominated by the Taoiseach, Charles Haughey, to the 16th Seanad. He was first elected to Dáil Éireann at the November 1982 general election. He retained his seat at each subsequent general election until his retirement in 2011.[2]

O'Keeffe served in a number of frontbench positions. He was Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Industry from 1982 until 1987. While Fianna Fáil were in power between 1987 and 1994, O'Keeffe remained on the backbenches. When Bertie Ahern became party leader in 1994 O'Keeffe was appointed Deputy spokesperson on Enterprise and Employment with responsibility for Commerce, Science, Technology and Small Business. He served in that position until 1997 when he became Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture and Food. He served in that position until February 2001 when he had to resign due to his voting on a Dáil motion without declaring that he had a beneficial interest in the subject matter.

On 28 November 2007, during a debate on a motion of no confidence in the Minister for Health and Children Mary Harney, O'Keeffe resigned the Fianna Fáil party whip when forced to vote his confidence in the Minister.[3] On 26 February 2008 he was re-admitted to the Fianna Fáil parliamentary party.[4]

He was a member of Cork County Council from 1985 to 1997.

He was an unsuccessful candidate at the 2009 European Parliament election for the South constituency. In the pre-election debate on Today FM he voiced his support for the use of Nuclear power and an incinerator in Cork Harbour.[5]

He retired from politics at the 2011 general election.[6]


He was arrested on 27 April 2012 by members of the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation (GBFI) on suspicion of using a false invoice to claim for mobile phone expenses while he was a member of the Dáil.[7] He was held for a number of hours at Cobh Garda station under section 26 of the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act.[8]

On the 1 December 2014, O'Keeffe was found guilty of fraudulently claiming in excess of €3,700 in mobile phone usage expenses. He was fined €3,500 and given a 7-month suspended jail sentence for his crime.[9]


  1. ^ "Mr. Ned O'Keeffe". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 14 October 2009. 
  2. ^ "Ned O'Keeffe". Retrieved 14 October 2009. 
  3. ^ Sheahan, Fionnan; Brennan, Michael (29 November 2007). "Harney survives confidence vote as rebel FF TD quits". Irish Independent. 
  4. ^ "Ned O'Keeffe readmitted to FF Dáil party". RTÉ News. 26 February 2008. 
  5. ^ European Elections Debate, South – The Last Word with Matt Cooper, Today FM, 25 May 2009
  6. ^ "Ahern, O'Keeffe not contesting election". RTÉ News. 24 January 2011. Retrieved 24 January 2011. 
  7. ^ "Former TD Ned O'Keeffe arrested in false invoice inquiry". RTÉ News. 27 April 2012. 
  8. ^ "Ex-FF TD Ned O'Keeffe arrested". The Irish Times. 27 April 2012. 
  9. ^ "Ned O'Keeffe given suspended jail term for false invoices". The Irish Times. 1 December 2014. 
Preceded by
Joe Sherlock
(Workers' Party)
Fianna Fáil Teachta Dála for Cork East
Succeeded by
Tom Barry
(Fine Gael)
Political offices
Preceded by
Jimmy Deenihan
Minister of State for Food
Succeeded by
Éamon Ó Cuív